Former Fed chair Janet Yellen set to become first female treasury secretary

Janet Yellen, the first woman to chair the US Federal Reserve, is reportedly set to add another first, becoming the first female treasury secretary.

Biden unveils key picks while report says ex-Fed chair Janet Yellen to lead treasury – live

The Wall Street Journal reported on Tuesday that the 74-year-old economist will be named as president-elect Joe Biden’s choice on Tuesday.

Yellen will take the job during one of the most trying economic times in modern history. US unemployment hit a postwar record in April, in the first wave of the coronavirus pandemic, and while the jobs situation has improved, the recovery has slowed in recent months as rates of infection have increased.

Millions remain out of work, and women and people of color have been hit disproportionately hard by the downturn.

Yellen has recently advocated for more federal spending from Congress to tackle the economic devastation caused by the virus.

“There is a huge amount of suffering out there. The economy needs the spending,” Yellen said in a September interview.

Yellen, a former assistant professor at Harvard, and a lecturer at the London School of Economics, is an expert in labor markets who has highlighted the economic impact of uneven growth in the jobs market.

Biden said last week that his Treasury pick would be accepted by both the progressive and moderate wings of the Democrat party. Yellen has also in the past attracted bipartisan support, receiving 11 Republican votes for her 2014 confirmation as Fed chair, including the backing of three sitting Republican senators.

If appointed, Yellen will not only be the first female Fed chair and treasury secretary, but the first person to have headed both organizations and the White House Council of Economic Advisers.

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